Apr 19, 2012
Reviewed By Tony Piff
Price as Tested $52,345: IPL-tuned 3.7-liter 348-hp DOHC 24-valve VVEL V6 engine; rear-wheel drive; 7-speed automatic transmission with Drive Sport mode; solid magnesium paddle shifters; manual shift mode w/Downshift Rev Matching
Likes

Bold front fascia and side skirts nicely complimented by split-spoke 19-inch wheels. Red leather buckets seem correctly sized for plus-sized American bottoms. More headroom and visibility than expected up front; decent legroom for rear passengers. Remapped 3.7-liter V6 offers 18 more horsepower than the base G37. The 7-speed automatic provides seamless thrills in sport mode, with shift-if-you-want paddles at your fingertips for a more engaged experience. Excellent brakes. Lack of fake woodgrain is refreshing. Tiny trunk is still usable.

Dislikes

It looks louder than it is—with all that horsepower, I’d love a more barking exhaust note. Dual coffee-can exhausts undermine the otherwise sophisticated (though not understated) exterior treatments. Shifting via paddle is laggy and soft, both up and down. Slimmer drivers may find the large seat bolsters a poor fit.

Verdict

The aggressive exterior details clue you in to this luxury Japanese sports car’s performance aspirations. It offers a generous helping of both style and substance, but the balance clearly tips toward the former, when compared with the excellent selection of similarly priced true performance cars, like the BMW 1-series M coupe. 7-speed automatic sport mode works well enough when used without thinking too hard, but clumsy paddle shifting just seems like a novel accessory. The option of a 6-speed manual with clutch, however, is intriguing.

Fun to Drive
4.5 rating
Fun to Look at
4.5 rating
Overall Experience
4.0 rating
Stats